Edward Snowden, the fugitive who exposed the mass-surveillance practices at the National Security Agency isn’t just a hashtag anymore. Finally Edward Snowden joined Twitter on Tuesday, using the @Snowden Twitter handle. And within few hours he got more number of followers than NSA – @NSAGov. The NSA is also the only Twitter account that Snowden follows. But @NSAGov was not — at least not officially — following him back.
His account, which has been verified by Twitter as authentic, isn’t hard to find: It’s @Snowden. His attorney, Ben Wizner of the American Civil Liberties Union, confirmed to the Los Angeles Times that Snowden himself controls the account.
Here is his first Tweet:
Can you hear me now?
— Edward Snowden (@Snowden) September 29, 2015
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According to The Intercept – Twitter accommodated Snowden’s wish to join Twitter by clearing out an old account that had claimed the @Snowden handle but had not tweeted for three years.
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Twitter’s terms of service note that the company may collect a user’s “IP address, browser type, operating system, the referring web page, pages visited, location, your mobile carrier, device information (including device and application IDs), search terms, and cookie information.” In a recent interview with Fusion, Snowden noted that he was worried about joining social-media services for security reasons.
“Exploit codes [could be embedded] into the transactions I’m receiving from a legitimate service and compromise the security of my devices. I’ve been working for a long time on improving that and creating set-ups that are more robust and survivable when you do get owned,” — Snowden told Fusion, adding: “How do you limit the damage? How do you recover in the wake of a compromise? I’ve made a lot of strides in that and am looking forward to, hopefully, participating [on social networks] in a more open and active manner in the near future.”
Snowden, who has lived in Russia since turning over a trove of top-secret documents to reporters more than two years ago, has remained in the public eye thanks to frequent appearances and interviews using video links and sometimes even robots.
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